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Many so-called health foods need more careful examination – learn why you need to look beyond the claims made for them.
Do you often pick foods that look healthy to you? Are you influenced by the packaging and advertisements which keep doing the rounds on social media or TV?
Then hold on, because I have some bad yet honest news for you. What if I tell you that all that seems healthy and ‘good for you’ is simply a marketing gimmick and a way to sell XYZ Product?
Yes, it’s true. The packaging and marketing are good enough to mask in all the additives and most importantly unnecessary ingredients which are added to make the product look appealing. So, it’s time to know the truth and not get lured by the tall claims made by various companies to sell a particular product.
While plain yogurt is considered to be a good source of calcium and protein, flavoured yogurts are a big no-no. Most flavoured yogurts are laden with sugar and food colors which overpower the nutrients and simply leave you with an excess of sugar. Moreover, your cup of flavoured yogurt does not contain actual fruits; it is simply an extract of a dried version of the same. So, the next time you are at a store trying to grab a cup of flavoured yogurt thinking that it’s healthy, then stop right there!
The only ingredient you would get to taste when you drink most packs of fruit juices is sugar. Loaded with sugar, these fruit juices simply give you a dose of extra sweetness. The fiber of the fruit is killed ruthlessly and the only thing left behind is a concentrated sugary liquid. The heat treatment is enough to kill all the nutrients available in the fruit.
Plus, packaged juices contain a considerable dose of preservatives, synthetic colors, and flavourings, to make it more appealing and tasty. So, until now if you have been drinking a pack of fruit juice thinking it’s healthy, then stop right away. Fresh fruits are always a better bet.
Again, this is a product that has been marketed as highly healthy and nutritious, but unfortunately isn’t as healthy as it seems. Forget about protein, it is definitely a storehouse of sugar, fructose syrup, and unwanted calories that leave you craving for even more sugar. Besides, it has additives and preservatives which make it nothing less than a sugar-candy.
Read the nutrition labels before you purchase a protein bar. A home-made protein bar with dates, almonds, chia seeds, oats, home-made peanut butter, and sunflower seeds is a better option. Try it out, and you will never regret it!
You would say oats are highly nutritious and rich in fiber, so what’s wrong in consuming the same? The problem is the addition of excess sodium, sugars, and preservatives in the ready to eat versions, which no longer keep your bowl of oats, healthy. A better option is to purchase steel-cut or rolled oats without pre-added flavours and prepare it the way you like – oats upma, oats porridge, oats idli, oats uttapam, oats kheer are some of the few options that can easily be made with the same without any hassles.
These seem to have become a part of the modern-day diet and are especially preferred by individuals who are on a weight loss spree. However, there’s some bad news again; Rice cakes are simply carbohydrates with an excess of sodium, sans any other nutrients. In short, you can say that it is carb-dense and contains more carbs than a potato.
A potato that on average weighs around 170 gms has 23 percent carbs whereas a rice cake weighs 9 gms and has 80 percent of carbs. So in short, eating half a potato is a better option than consuming a rice cake. Also, if you are looking to snack healthy, a fruit, a glass of fruit yogurt smoothie, a bowl of mixed fruits, home-made poha/kurmura (rice-puffs) chivda are not healthy but can be extremely nutritious too.
So read the food labels before you purchase any food product and don’t buy into the super-healthy claims made by certain brands to sell their products. Be wise when you pick any product!
Photo by Kaboompics.com from Pexels
First published here.
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A Nutritionist, Clinical Dietitian, Speaker, health/fitness blogger, online show host, menu planner, menstrual health,
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